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The Doomsday Heist Feels like GTA Online's Campaign Mode

The Doomsday Heist Feels like GTA Online's Campaign Mode
From IGN - December 12, 2017
By Daniel Krupa

Weve already played the First Act and spent a good five hours mucking about in flying cars, obliterating each other with orbital lasers and zipping around the city in jetpacks mounted with miniguns. Its eccentric and ridiculous, as you desperately try to avert a potential apocalypse from engulfing the city of Los Santos. Since its out today, theres not much point going through specifics of what you actually do, but instead heres a detailed overview of how it works and some of the coolest stuff it adds to GTA Online.

Unlike previous heists, which were discrete missions, The Doomsday Heist tells a much bigger, campaign-quality story that raises the stakes to an absurd level. Egotistical billionaire entrepreneur Avon Hertz (think Elon Musk), with the assistance of his artificial intelligence Clifford (think Siri meets Jarvis), find evidence that some outside party is planning to destroy all life. With the help of Lester, you and your team are recruited to save not only Los Santos but life as we know it.

The Doomsday Heist is one sprawling mission encompassing three distinct acts. Each act more closely resembles heists as they currently function in GTA Online. That means a series of smaller set-up missions, which typically involve acquiring the equipment to pull-off a more elaborate final mission. We played the First Act of three to completion, which took roughly four hours. So to finish The Doomsday Heist in its entirety we could be looking around 12 hoursa runtime that gives most single-players game a run for their money. The Doomsday Heist may well prove to be the most significant expansion to GTA Online.

Before initiating The Doomsday Heist, one of your party must purchase a Facility and become the CEO of a new organisation. This requires you having a fair bit of cash in your bank but is done simply enough through a few clicks on your phone. There are 9 IAA Facilities dotted around the mapthe one I bought was just to the East of the city, situated beneath a lake. Upon buying it, you can customise it in a variety of ways: there are nine striking (i.e. garish) colour schemes available; a lounge, security room (which comes with a gun locker and a live-in on-demand strike team should you need them), and personal quarters, meaning you can spawn here instead of your downtown apartment. Theres even a friendly receptionist whos always happy to dole out snacks. These ridiculous new digs instantly cast you as both a Mission: Impossible-style task force and an insane Bond villain in a Zuckerberg world.

The reason you need one of these facilities is because they contain the high-tech briefing room that allows you to initiate The Doomsday set-up missions. The First Act is broken down into three smaller missions, each containing a set-up component and a more elaborate pay-off mission. Interestingly, the first part of these missions take place fully in GTA Online, meaning other players can help or hinder your mission, while the more elaborate later stages are instanced missions, involving the 2-4 players that make up your heist team.

GTA has an interesting relationship toward reality. In one sense, its arguably the most realistic representations of the real world you can find in a video game. I played GTA V before Id ever visited LA, and when I finally did, the queasy feeling of deja vu was waiting around nearly every corner. Insignificant parking lots were instantly familiar. It is an obsessive recreation of a real-world location. But GTA moves quickly beyond reality; it uses that fidelity as a launch-pad for something always much wilder and more eccentric.

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